snow in hamilton terrace

As we shiver here in the UK, it is as good a time as any to review how we stay cool.

Do you keep a cool head, when the people around you are losing theirs?
Do you stay “cool”, no matter what is going on?
Do you get easily worked up? Or do you remain calm and serene?

Peace of mind is not something that we have just when everything is going well. It comes from a combination of many things, and once achieved can sustain us when things are not going well, even through a tragedy.

Here are my tips for staying cool and creating a more peaceful state of mind, no matter what

1. Sit quietly and breathe naturally. This is probably the fastest and easiest way to chill out and can be done anywhere, anytime, with your eyes open or closed. Taking long, slow deep breathes signals your body that you want peace. You can go one step further and take on meditation classes.

2. Disregard small issues – do not lose any sleep over them. And then learn to view all issues as small issues. Ask yourself – does this really matter?

3. Build up reserves of certain essential items, and know that you are not going to lose your peace by running out of things such as petrol, postage stamps, toilet paper and basic food items.

4. Zap your list of things to do. Having undone things, deadlines, overdue payments etc causes stress every time you think about them. Fix a schedule to get rid of them and enlist a friend or a family member, to keep you on schedule. Just knowing that you are making progress will enhance your peace of mind.

5. Give up on your inner compulsion to constantly try to “fix” things — situations, people, etc. Step back from stressful situations and give yourself permission to leave the world as it is.

6. Let go of the things you cannot control. Outcomes are out of your control, no matter how well you execute a plan. Do the very best you can, then back off. Remember that all you can do is all you can do.

7. Forgive others and believe in their innate goodness. You do not need to go through life full of anger, or nagging hostility towards anyone including yourself. Remember that most people do not harm others on purpose, and that we all do the best we can with what we believe we have.

Know also that the only person about whom you have the right to make decisions is yourself.

8. Prioritise your life and spend time only with those things/people that are important to you. If any activity does not add value to your life, eliminate it. If it makes your life a struggle, unload it. Keep only what really matters.

9. Create quiet time in your life. Schedule one or two blocks of time for “peace” every week. Allow yourself to do, or not do whatever feels most peaceful during that time.

10. Make your surroundings relaxing and enjoyable. Keep them tidy, organised, and attractive, and feel pleasure as you look around you. Involve all your senses – for example, try music or silence; the smell of incense; the feel of freshly laundered sheets.

11. Get in touch with nature. Have a short walk at least once a day. Find a large healthy tree, and sit with your back right up against it. Feel the power of the tree. Or sit by any body of water, such as a fountain, ocean or lake.

Take a drive in the country and see lots of trees and maybe even some cows or horses. Bask in all that nature – all city dwellers will find time spent in the country peaceful and revitalising.

12. Turn off the lights and use candlelight for a short time. This will immediately put you in a calm mood as candles are a signal for you to slow down and relax. Make the act of lighting candles a ritual for creating and experiencing calmness.

13. Set yourself up for a peaceful night’s sleep. Stop reliving scenarios from your day – just let the day go, and let tomorrow wait until tomorrow. Take some deep breaths and as you doze off, think of nothing.

Apply some of these tips, and people will soon notice your new calm and peaceful state, come rain, shine or even another sudden bust of snowfall.

Keep your cool no matter how hot or cold it gets!

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